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BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration

Amos 17 Nov 05 - 08:32 AM
Amos 17 Nov 05 - 09:43 AM
Amos 18 Nov 05 - 09:52 AM
Amos 18 Nov 05 - 10:39 AM
Amos 18 Nov 05 - 11:14 AM
Amos 18 Nov 05 - 01:03 PM
Stilly River Sage 18 Nov 05 - 03:26 PM
Amos 18 Nov 05 - 05:09 PM
Bobert 18 Nov 05 - 08:03 PM
Amos 18 Nov 05 - 09:16 PM
Amos 18 Nov 05 - 10:33 PM
Amos 19 Nov 05 - 09:25 PM
Bobert 19 Nov 05 - 09:42 PM
Amos 20 Nov 05 - 08:50 AM
Amos 20 Nov 05 - 09:14 AM
Amos 20 Nov 05 - 09:34 AM
Amos 20 Nov 05 - 01:23 PM
Bobert 20 Nov 05 - 07:30 PM
Amos 21 Nov 05 - 09:19 AM
Amos 21 Nov 05 - 10:36 PM
Amos 23 Nov 05 - 10:57 PM
Bobert 23 Nov 05 - 11:18 PM
Amos 24 Nov 05 - 11:39 AM
Amos 24 Nov 05 - 01:27 PM
GUEST,Old Guy 24 Nov 05 - 09:37 PM
Amos 24 Nov 05 - 10:55 PM
Bobert 25 Nov 05 - 06:26 PM
GUEST,Old Guy 26 Nov 05 - 02:21 AM
freda underhill 26 Nov 05 - 04:41 AM
freda underhill 26 Nov 05 - 04:44 AM
Bobert 26 Nov 05 - 07:54 PM
GUEST,Old Guy 26 Nov 05 - 11:13 PM
Bobert 26 Nov 05 - 11:34 PM
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GUEST,Wanderer 28 Nov 05 - 11:40 PM
Stilly River Sage 29 Nov 05 - 03:03 PM
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Donuel 30 Nov 05 - 02:23 PM
Amos 02 Dec 05 - 01:19 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 17 Nov 05 - 08:32 AM

Public comments are now being accepted by the Environmental Protection
>Agency (EPA) on its newly proposed federal regulation regarding the testing
>of chemicals and pesticides on human subjects. Earlier this year, Congress
>had mandated the EPA create a rule that permanently bans chemical testing on
>pregnant women and children, but the EPA's newly proposed rule actually
>creates gaping loopholes for the chemical industry. The rule allows for
>government and industry scientists to treat children as human guinea pigs in
>chemical experiments in the following situations: 1) Children who "cannot be
>reasonably consulted," such as those that are mentally handicapped or
>orphaned newborns may be tested on. With permission from the institution or
>guardian in charge of the individual, the child may be exposed to chemicals
>for the sake of research.
>2) Parental consent forms are not necessary for testing on children who have
>been neglected or abused.
>3) Chemical studies on any children outside of the U.S. are acceptable. You
>can learn more and take action here:
Details on this page.

The Administration has constantly operated against the interests of National Parks, scientific research, and children. Too busy starting wars, I suppose.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 17 Nov 05 - 09:43 AM

While this is only indirectly about the Administration per se, I found today's SFGate essay on Bill O'Reilly worth a grin, and offer a small part of its spicy invective:

"And he is one who now suggests that because San Francisco dared to ban aggressive military recruiting in our high schools so disadvantaged 18-year-olds won't be unwittingly sucked into the brutish military vortex so they can be shipped off to Iraq to die for appalling and indefensible reasons, al Qaeda should blow up Coit Tower.

What do you do with that? You laugh. Sure, file a formal complaint with the Fox network. Sure, demand that Billy be fired, which is a bit like demanding Ronald McDonald be canned from the McDonald's corporation for poisoning our children. Yes, you have to do it, even if such complaints come from someone like San Francisco Supervisor Chris Daly, not exactly the poster child for tact and grace when it comes to political maneuvering.

But of course, it won't make one bit of difference. BOR is still Fox's cash cow. He draws big ratings, even here in the Bay Area. And even if O'Reilly's cultural relevance is tanking right along with the bad ship BushCo, he's still getting PR for miles out of the childish comment. Hell, you're reading a column about it right now, which means all those extremist right-wing inbreeding sites get to squeal "San Francisco in Uproar Over O'Reilly Comments," and grunt and revel in our displeasure. Ah well. It matters not.

Here's the takeaway, the only thing you need to know: Bill O'Reilly is a walking, snorting cautionary tale. For those of us who occasionally tread similar terrain of barbed political commentary (tempered, I hope, with satire and hope and sex and humor and fire hoses of divine juice), he is the Grand Pariah, the threshold, the Place You Do Not Want To Go as an intellectually curious human soul. He is the guy you can always look to, no matter how bad it gets, and say, Wow, at least I'm not him.

In a way, we should be grateful for O'Reilly and Robertson and Limbaugh and Coulter and their slime-slinging ilk. They live in those black and nasty psycho-emotional places, so we don't have to. They show us how ugly we can be, how poisonous and ill, so we may recoil and say, Whoa, you know what? I think I need to be more gentle and less judgmental and kinder to those I love. BOR works an inverse effect on anyone with a vibrant and active soul -- he makes us better by sucking all the grossness into himself and blowing it out via a TV channel no one of any spiritual acumen really respects anyway."

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 09:52 AM

A top opposition congressman has dramatically raised tensions over U.S. President George W. Bush's Iraq policy by calling for the withdrawal of U.S. troops. John Murtha, one of the most senior Democratic leaders in the U.S. House of Representatives, said on 17 November that "the U.S. cannot accomplish anything further in Iraq militarily. It is time to bring [the troops] home." The Bush administration has immediately counterattacked by calling Murtha's statement "baffling."

Washington, D.C., 18 November 2005 (RFE/RL) -- U.S. Representative John Murtha is usually regarded as a hawk -- someone who supports the military in most of what it does.

So when he made this statement at a Washington press conference on 17 November, he got immediate attention.

"It is time for a change in direction," Murtha said. "Our military is suffering. The future of our country is at risk. We cannot continue on the present course. It is evident that continued military action in Iraq is not in the best interest of the United States of America, the Iraqi people, or the Persian Gulf region."

Murtha -- who is a retired Marine colonel and a decorated Vietnam veteran -- said he wants U.S. troops out of Iraq as soon as they can be withdrawn safely. He estimated that should take about six months.

The Bush administration was clearly stung by the attack by the powerful congressman, who is the senior Democrat on the House of Representative's subcommittee that oversees defense spending

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 10:39 AM

The Wall Street Journal reports:

PRESIDENT BUSH'S job approval rating sank to another low in November, with 34% of Americans saying he is doing an "excellent" or "pretty good job," while 65% rank his performance as "only fair" or "poor," according to the latest Harris Interactive poll. Vice President Cheney got a mere 30% positive rating in the latest telephone poll of 1,011 adults, while Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld saw a 34% positive rating. Representatives in Congress fared even worse: 27% of those polled now rate Republicans favorably and only a quarter give Democrats positive marks.

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 11:14 AM

The WSJ, I am glad to report, also covers the fact that some folks in the Senate are developing enough spine NOT to just rubber stamp the atrocious so-called "Patriot" act, the one which allows some Patriots to invade the privacy and undermine the civil rights of others at great expense to companies:

"WASHINGTON -- Opposition mounted on and off Capitol Hill to extending investigative provisions in the USA Patriot Act, as House and Senate negotiators worked to shore up an agreement to renew the antiterrorism law.

Sens. Larry Craig (R., Idaho), John Sununu (R., N.H.), Lisa Murkowski (R., Alaska), Dick Durbin (D., Ill.), Russ Feingold (D., Wis.) and Ken Salazar (D., Colo.) said they will fight reauthorization of the entire measure unless it incorporates changes to prevent excessive government intrusion in personal matters.

The Bush administration has been pushing Congress to reauthorize and strengthen the act as a vital counterterrorism tool.

The six senators join an unlikely alliance of opponents to the bill, including the American Civil Liberties Union and criminal-defense lawyers on one side of the political spectrum, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers, the U.S.'s two largest business groups, on the other.

Business is concerned by the growing use, and with it costs, of demands on companies by the Federal Bureau of Investigation for personal records of customers, suppliers and employees.

The six senators wrote the Senate Judiciary Committee yesterday saying that it was essential that a new Patriot Act "continues to provide law enforcement with the tools to investigate possible terrorist activity while making reasonable changes to the original law to protect innocent people from unnecessary and intrusive government surveillance."

"If further changes are not made, we will work to stop this bill from becoming law," they said.

Their protest came just hours after Republicans had said a tentative agreement had been reached. But that deal appeared to be in doubt when Senate Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter (R., Pa.) canceled a news conference on the measure.

Republican staffers said a compromise on differing House and Senate versions had been reached that addressed business and privacy-advocate concerns, curbing some extended powers for law enforcement. The terms reached by negotiators include some new restrictions on government powers, including greater public reporting and oversight of how often the government is demanding records and using various investigative tools.

On close inspection of the deal, privacy advocates and business groups concluded that important provisions that existed in the Senate version of the bill to prevent civil-rights abuses in terror investigations had been gutted. In particular, they felt there wasn't sufficient judicial oversight of National Security Letters, a form of subpoena used to demand phone records and other business records without the approval of a judge. While the proposed law does allow recipients to appeal the letters, it makes it relatively easy for the government to defeat a challenge by claiming that demand for records is a matter of national security.

Moreover, businesses that receive NSLs, as they are called, face new criminal penalties if they tell their customers about them. Under the proposed law, customers may in fact never get notice that their records were requested and obtained by federal agents. Businesses that receive these orders aren't advised that they have a right to consult an attorney and challenge the demand.

Business opposition to the new Patriot Act is in part driven by the costs associated with complying with tens of thousands of NSLs every year."

It strikes me as pathetic that business will oppose such fascistic measures only because of the financial costs. Strategically, being willing to lie to your customers about their interests is very poor anti-productive behavior for a business, now being forced on them byt the security weenies. If I thought a business had pulled such a stunt on me my custom would be gone in a New York minute and I woudl do everything I could to prevent other business for them by those I know.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 01:03 PM

In an interview posted on the CNN news site John Kerry demonstrates again that he is more analytical, more intelligent, and more ethical than the lout he lost to in '04.

He provides concise and straightforward answers to a lot of hard questions, does it with intelligence and a respect for facts, and says what he thinks. And makes it clear that he does think, unlike ole homeboy from Connecticut Texas.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 03:26 PM

Here's a link for you: Sierra Club RAW Archives

Uncooked Truth, Beyond Belief

Issue #139, November 17, 2005
Cheney of Fools
Eric Antebi, RAW Contributor

Last week the U.S. Senate tried to show common
cause with the American people by dragging oil
executives up to Capitol Hill and grilling them
about record profits and possible price gouging.
In the case of Joe Pickup versus Big Oil, the
Senators wanted to position themselves on the
side of ol' Joe, hoping, of course, that no one
would notice the billions of dollars in tax
breaks and subsidies they gave to oil companies
only a few months ago.

In his column last week about how the Senate
"rolled out the red carpet" for the Oil execs,
Washington Post writer Dana Milbank wrote "The
executives were even less forthcoming when
questions turned hostile. Sen. Frank Lautenberg
asked whether any of the companies had
participated in Vice President Cheney's energy
task force, and all five answered in the
negative. Fortunately, they were not under oath."

Oh how right he was. A week later, Milbank
himself obtained a White House document
confirming the companies met with the Task Force.
Milbank and co-writer Justin Blum pointed out in
the article that Commerce Committee Chairman Ted
Stevens (R-AK) refused to make the oil magnets
testify under oath, a decision that was strongly
protested at the time by Senate Democrats.

Now you may be wondering, "What's the big deal?
Shouldn't oil companies have some input in our
energy policy?" Yes, they should. Now, so
should everyone else. But the real questions
that all Americans should be asking is this:
Given that no one is shocked that oil companies
would meet with Cheney's Task Force, why would
Cheney go all the way to the Supreme Court to
prevent the public from learning about it? Why
did the oil executives look into the cameras and
lie about their participation in the Task Force?
What exactly are these people trying to hide?

If the Senate had any guts, it would put Vice
President Cheney and the Oil Executives on the
stand and under oath. Justice Scalia could do
the honors.

Dana Milbank, "Oil and Grilling Don't Mix,"
Washington Post, Nov. 10, 2005.,gkhj,o7l,cwbz,6rb0,c7it,3ojx

Dana Milbank and Justin Blum, "Document Says Oil
Chiefs Met With Cheney Task Force," Washington Post,
Nov. 16, 2005.,gkhj,o7l,43d4,k906,c7it,3ojx

To subscribe to RAW visit:,gkhj,o7l,9nft,ng5,c7it,3ojx

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 05:09 PM

Patrick Fitzgerald, the special prosecutor in the CIA leak case, on Thursday revealed he would continue to investigate the matter with a new grand jury, a move believed to be linked to evidence given by the veteran Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward earlier this week.

Mr Fitzgerald's decision to call a new grand jury, seen by legal experts as an important development, will keep an uncomfortable spotlight focused on the White House already dealing with mounting popular discontent with the war in Iraq and President George W. Bush's handling of pre-war intelligence.

This is a positive development in spite of the added complexity, IMHO. It keeps a bright light shining on the weasel den.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Bobert
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 08:03 PM

Yeah, Amos, with Woodward's confessions this week, Rove just ihgt get Libby off the hook a little... Of course that's gonna mean havin' to displace Libby as the "Bigger Snitch" but, hey, would be nice to see fatso go...


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 09:16 PM

The sorry reflections on "fin-de-siecle" journalism in Washington, from the LA Times:

November 19, 2005 : National News

Tim Rutten:

Woodward joins a decadent dance

Whatever impact the scandal surrounding the leak of former CIA agent Valerie Plame's identity ultimately has on the Bush administration, it continues to spread through the Washington press corps like a toxic plume.

As it does, it discredits not only individual reporters and damages their news organizations but also an entire style of reporting that has come to dominate the way Americans are informed — or misinformed — concerning their government's conduct.

This week's casualty was the Washington Post's Bob Woodward, who, as it turns out, has concealed for 17 months the fact that a Bush administration official he still refuses to name to his readers leaked Plame's identity to him before the vice president's former chief of staff, I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby — now under indictment for perjury — named the then-covert agent to New York Times reporter Judy Miller and others.

Woodward's disclosure was motivated not by a sudden pang of conscience, as it turns out, but by the sudden necessity of testifying under oath before a federal grand jury. Along the way, he incidentally revealed not only that he had concealed this information from his editors and readers for fear of subpoena, but also that he had in the interim gone on several television shows to trash the special prosecutor investigating the affair. Moreover, it now emerges, the reporting that went into his last best-selling book, "Plan of Attack," involved the submission of written questions in advance to Vice President Dick Cheney, a fact he never bothered to share with the book's readers.

There is something singularly appropriate about the fact that the Plame affair should involve Woodward, whose skillful and courageous use of the ur-voice among confidential sources virtually created a whole genre of Washington reporting. It's a journalistic strategy style dependent on the cultivation of access to well-placed officials greased by promises of "confidentiality." It's a way of doing journalism that still serves its practitioners' career interests, but less and less often their readers or viewers because it's a game the powerful and well-connected have learned to play to their own advantage.

Whatever its self-righteous pretensions, it's a style of journalism whose signature sound is less the blowing of whistles than it is the spinning of tops.

That's why the Washington press corps, whose ranks include so many alleged commentators that you can't spit without hitting one, steadfastly refuses to put the Plame affair and its participants in the context that explains the event. That context is the Bush administration's unprecedented — and largely successful — effort to bend Washington-based news coverage to its ends. The Washington press corps doesn't want to talk about this because it basically puts some of its most admired members in a line of venal patsies. But consider:

Who can forget the administration's payment of nearly a quarter of a million dollars in federal money to the hapless pseudo-columnist and television and radio commentator Armstrong Williams, to promote the president's "no child left behind" initiative?

Then there was the distribution to local television stations across the country of federally financed, pre-packaged video reports designed to support the administration's educational and energy policy initiatives. The videos were tricked up to look like regular news feeds and apparently ran on numerous small stations whose viewers never were informed that they were watching government propaganda.

This week, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting's inspector general reported that PBS' former chairman, Kenneth Y. Tomlinson, appears to have violated federal law by trying to force a political slant onto the network's programming. The inspector's report alluded to e-mails between Tomlinson and a White House official. On Thursday, reported that "Presidential advisor Karl Rove" and Tomlinson "discussed creating a 'conservative talk show and adding it to the public television lineup.' " According to Kenneth Konz, PBS' inspector general, Tomlinson and Rove, President Bush's chief political advisor, also corresponded about "shaking up the agency" and "adding Republican staff."

Placed in this context, Woodward, Miller, Time magazine's Matthew Cooper and NBC's Tim Russert are less tragic figures in a grand journalistic drama than they are sad — but willing — bit players in somebody else's rather sorry little charade.

This is hardly the first administration intent on managing the press for its own convenience and advantage. Abraham Lincoln had no more compunction about shutting down Copperhead newspapers than he did about suspending habeas corpus. During World War I, Woodrow Wilson's Justice Department was ruthless in its treatment of our then-vast and vigorous foreign-language press and publishing houses.

The preternaturally charming Franklin Roosevelt found it easy to play the White House press corps like a violin, since most of its members — unlike their papers' proprietors — were favorably disposed toward the New Deal. Roosevelt, moreover, consciously used the new mass medium of radio to speak around the country's generally hostile editorial pages and directly to the people.

John Kennedy, who genuinely liked reporters and was fascinated by journalism, made famous and effective use of his warm friendships with White House correspondents, including Benjamin C. Bradlee, who would go on to be Woodward's editor. Richard Nixon — for whom charm was not an option — plotted to use the IRS against reporters, editors and cartoonists who irritated him. (An ill-advised digression into burglary short-circuited the plan.) Bill Clinton, who always thought he could sweet talk the chrome off a trailer hitch, was fond of making personal calls to reporters' homes. (This writer was the recipient of a couple of those, and found them — like cheap champagne — a mildly heady, if ultimately unconvincing, experience.)

Two things have distinguished this Bush administration's efforts at press manipulation from those that have gone before.

One is their sweep and consistency. There has been bribery — as in the egregious case of the wretched Williams. There has been deception — as in the planting of phony news videos. There have been alleged violations of federal laws and regulations — as in Tomlinson's and Rove's efforts to subvert public television. There has been stealth — as in the whispering campaign to discredit Plame's husband, former Ambassador Joseph Wilson.

And, of course, there has been good old-fashioned bullying, as in the president's and vice-president's assertions that raising questions about their push to war or the torture of U.S. captives is somehow "reprehensible" and unpatriotic. It's a melancholy comment on the state of the American press that it takes a former director of Central Intelligence, Adm. Stansfield Turner, to identify Dick Cheney for what he has become — "vice president for torture" — and that he had to do it in a foreign forum, on Britain's ITV news, as he did Thursday.

The other reason all this has more or less succeeded and gone all but unremarked upon is that the administration has adroitly availed itself of the cultural complicity that prevails in a fin de siθcle Washington press corps living out the decadence of an increasingly discredited reporting style. As the Valerie Plame scandal and its spreading taint have made all too clear, the trade in confidentiality and access that has made stars of reporters like Bob Woodward and Judy Miller now is utterly bankrupt. (...)

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 18 Nov 05 - 10:33 PM

The current on-line edition of Slate discusses Dick Cheney's methods:

Cheney's Rules of Evidence
How the vice president argues by deception.

By John Dickerson
Posted Friday, Nov. 18, 2005, at 6:12 PM ET

By talking about "irresponsible comments," Cheney makes it seem that critics are welcoming insurgent bombs or inviting Saddam Hussein for dinner. But how outlandish, in fact, are these "irresponsible" claims by those who voted to authorize force? The most incendiary quote the administration and GOP committees can offer comes from Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid: "[T]he administration engaged in a pattern of manipulation of the facts … as it made its case for attacking, for invading Iraq." Reid's charge is debatable, but it's hardly the combustible, irresponsible speech Cheney suggests it is. Cheney is setting the bar for irresponsibility so low that any questions about prewar intelligence can be dismissed.

Cheney: "These are elected officials who had access to the intelligence, and were free to draw their own conclusions."

Cheney talks only about a narrow question: Did the administration fudge evidence it gave to Congress in advance of the vote to authorize the use of force? That's the most solid ground he can stand on, but even it's still shaky. Cheney does not repeat Bush's claim that members of Congress had access to the same intelligence, because they didn't. But he plays up their unprecedented access to the National Intelligence Estimate before they cast their vote—though Cheney knows that some important caveats were left out of that report. Congress had access to intelligence before bombs started dropping, but the administration decided, in the end, how much and what kind of intelligence that was.

And what the vice president doesn't talk about is all the other ways he, the president, and other members of the war council manipulated evidence in hundreds of speeches and interviews leading up to the war. Cheney, for example, insisted there might be a link between Iraq and the attacks on 9/11 after the administration's official position was that there was no such link. He presented the direst view of Iraq's nuclear program without discussing dissent within the administration about those claims. This was not intelligence data, but these claims were critical to shaping public opinion and putting pressure on Congress to vote for war. He could make a case about why the administration had to be aggressive, but he doesn't. (snip)

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 19 Nov 05 - 09:25 PM

Murtha's Moment: Not Soon Forgotten

In Depth

Nov. 18, 2005
Long-time War Hawk, Murtha Is An Angry Dove
Nov. 19, 2005
Bush, on Asia Trip, Rebuffs U.S. War Critics

"Our military is suffering. The future of our country is at risk. We cannot continue on the present course."
Rep. John Murtha, Thursday, November 19, 2005 · No fewer than five American flags flanked the podium when Pennsylvania Democrat John Murtha strode into a Capitol briefing room to announce his dramatic reversal on the war in Iraq. Once a solid vote in favor of the invasion, Murtha now says the troops should come home "at the earliest practicable date."

Murtha, 73, is not one of the Capitol's many dandies; he is a large, leathery, no-nonsense kind of guy who makes his own grammatical rules. He won two Purple Hearts as a combat Marine in the Korean and Vietnam wars, after which he tacked on 23 more years in the Marine Reserve. In Congress since 1973, he has been a staunch supporter of the Pentagon, voting to back the Persian Gulf War in 1991 and for the current Iraq conflict in 2002 (unlike most Democrats, in both cases). Since 1989, he has been either chairman or the ranking Democrat on the Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense.

So for this legendary advocate of the military to express such a position was breathtaking.

Murtha's aides handed out copies of his written speech beforehand. There were also copies of the resolution he would introduce calling for redeployment of U.S. forces, and a thick packet including correspondence between Murtha and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld about the war. Supplied with these things, reporters knew the substance of what was coming -- though we could not have known its timbre.

The congressman began by reading his written statement, the very first two sentences of which were typically direct:

"The war in Iraq is not going as advertised. It is a flawed policy wrapped in illusion."

But Murtha did not stick to the script. Reading his own words seemed to make him angrier and angrier, and as he started talking about the troubles young soldiers are having returning from the war -- what Murtha called "battle fatigue" -- and the rising cost of their health care, he began to choke up. It is rare to see a member of Congress cry, and especially one as rough-hewn as Murtha. As his words got softer and he labored to speak, reporters leaned forward in their chairs, watching with attention.

He described watching a father, also a retired Marine, stroking the hand of a son who came back from Iraq in a coma. Murtha told of working inside the Pentagon to have a Purple Heart awarded to a young soldier whose body had been torn apart by an American bomb.

Perhaps most poignant of all was Murtha's story of visiting a soldier at Walter Reed Army Hospital in Washington. He told of touching the wounded man's hand, accidentally causing wracking spasms of pain up the young man's wounded arm. You could feel the grief Murtha was still carried at having caused this one victim more pain.

Murtha has previously been critical of the U.S. approach to the war. In 2004, he said the Pentagon had to commit more troops and money if it wanted to win in Iraq. At the time, he caught considerable flak from the House Republican leadership. Tom DeLay of Texas, then the Majority Leader, said Murtha was essentially declaring "surrender in the war on terrorism."

But that was a dust-up beside the firestorm Murtha ignited this week. No sooner had he left his midday news conference than 14 Republicans were on hand to tell reporters that proposing immediate withdrawal was outrageous and out of the question. Some members of Congress took to the floor to denounce him, while others asked what it meant when a lifelong hawk was ready to advocate such a policy.

For its part, the White House pronounced itself "baffled" that a man of Murtha's record would turn against the war, comparing his new views to those of controversial documentary filmmaker Michael Moore.

The next day, House Republicans said they would bring "Murtha's resolution" to an immediate vote on the House floor. But what they offered up for a vote instead was a one-line resolution penned by Armed Services Chairman Duncan Hunter that Murtha himself, as well as the rest of the Democrats, immediately disavowed. It read: "It is the sense of the House of Representatives that the deployment of United States forces in Iraq be terminated immediately."

This last maneuver sent the House spinning into a high-volume and vituperative debate on the eve of the Thanksgiving recess. Ugly as it was, it was a fitting end to a ragged week, in which tensions over the war, the budget and the management of the GOP majority often reduced the normally disciplined House to an unruly caricature of itself....

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Bobert
Date: 19 Nov 05 - 09:42 PM

BTW, Murha is going to be on Meet the Press, er whatever the show is tomorrow with Tim Russert...

Oughtta be of interest...

Let me say this... BUsh is a friggin' idiot... Here he is in with these extremely low poll numbers and what does this dummy do??? He goes after hsi base yerta again...

Yeah, keep it up, Goeoge and you'll run off even the most partisan of the partisan...

At some point in time you'd think he'd do somethin' unifyin'
byut all he knows is how to divide...

He make Lincoln look like a boy scout and look what it got Lincoln... Had the South won, guess what... We wouldn't be readin' about how Lincoln was so great... He wasn't great... He pushed the South into a war thye country definately didn't need...

And now we have Lincoln II 'cept this one ain't hald as smart as the first Lincoln...

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 20 Nov 05 - 08:50 AM

The LA Times scoops the nation in revealing the source of much of the Bush Administrations red-hot intell on WMD, back when so many poeple were saying "They must know something we don't know". Turns out it was a goofball named "Curveball" and the Germans told the U.S. all about how unstable he was, and how rotten his data was. The US guys thought it was fine intell, jes' fine. Maybe because it suited their most unworthy purposes?

Hmmmmmmmmmm......maybe we shouldn't call it "intelligence".


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 20 Nov 05 - 09:14 AM

I think I underemphasized the story in the L.A. TImes about Curveball. THis is a classic revelation of complete stupidity, cupidity, and mismanagement of intelligence.

But more germane to this thread is that when the truth about this whacko started to come out, the Administration came down hard on those in the CIA who tried to clarify the intell and set the record straight.

The war machine was fueled by something other than intelligence, no question.

Full story here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 20 Nov 05 - 09:34 AM

Another major piece of slimy covert legislation from the self-styled Good Guys (read slimeballs) of the current Gummint:

DENVER, Nov. 19 - Private companies and individuals would be able to buy large tracts of federal land, from sagebrush basins to high-peak hiking trails around the West, under the terms of the spending bill passed Friday by a two-vote margin in the House of Representatives.

The Spending Bill
On the surface, the bill reads like the mundane nip and tuck of federal mining law its authors say it is. But lawyers who have parsed its language say the real beneficiaries could be real estate developers, whose business has become a more potent economic engine in the West than mining.

Under the existing law, a mining claim is the vehicle that allows for the extraction of so-called hard-rock metals like gold or silver.

Under the House bill passed Friday, for the first time in the history of the 133-year-old mining law individuals or companies can file and expand claims even if the land at the heart of a claim has already been stripped of its minerals or could never support a profitable mine. The measure would also lift an 11-year moratorium on the passing of claims into full ownership.

The provisions have struck fear through the West, from the resort areas of the Rockies like Aspen and Vail here in Colorado, to Park City in Utah, which are all laced with old mining claims. Critics say it could open the door for developers to use the claims to assemble large land parcels for projects like houses, hotels, ski resorts, spas or retirement communities.

And some experts on public land use say it is possible that energy companies could use the provision to buy land in the energy-rich fields of Wyoming and Montana on the pretext of mining, but then drill for oil and gas.

"They are called mining claims, but you can locate them where there are no minerals," said John D. Leshy, who was the Interior Department's senior lawyer during the Clinton administration. Mr. Leshy said the legislation "doesn't have much to do with mining at all."

"It has to do with real-estate transfer for economic development," he said.

(From the New York Times).

"Lessee -- Federal lands go to private ownership. There goes the neighborhood. . . "

"Oh, never MIND -- there's MONEY in it, dammit!"



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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 20 Nov 05 - 01:23 PM

The San Francisco Chronicle reports Bush is "making nice"...which is intersting, but given his history for destructive actions makes me a tad nervous:

"After fiercely defending his Iraq policy across Asia, President Bush abruptly toned down his attack on war critics Sunday and said there was nothing unpatriotic about opposing his strategy.

"People should feel comfortable about expressing their opinions about Iraq," Bush said, three days after agreeing with Vice President Dick Cheney that the critics were "reprehensible."

The president also praised Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa., as "a fine man" and a strong supporter of the military despite the congressman's call for troop withdrawal as soon as possible.

Bush brought up the growing Iraq debate when he met reporters after inconclusive talks with President Hu Jintao about friction in U.S.-China relations. Bush ran into stiff resistance from the Chinese to his call for expanding religious freedom and human rights."...

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Bobert
Date: 20 Nov 05 - 07:30 PM

If he's makin' nice, Amos, is because Karl Rove told him that his little Veteran's Day assault on 65% of Americans had dropped his pole nummers another 5%...

And, make no bones about it, that is exaxctly what the scrw-up did... Fir the sake of the handfull of rednecks and anti-abortionist who love it when Bushie pumps out his chest and "proclaims, proclaims, proclaims", BUsh attacked 65 tp 70% of the country...

Hey, don't matter if ya' use old math, new math, er any math in the middle, that was just plain dumb!!!

You can kiss off the last 3 years of this administartion... These guys have no interest in anything but appealing to their adoring right winged fan club...


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 21 Nov 05 - 09:19 AM

The TImes describes an interesting dynamic between three Republican Senators and Dick "Dick" Cheney.

"WASHINGTON, Nov. 20 - On a July evening in the Capitol, Vice President Dick Cheney summoned three Republican senators to his ornate office just off the Senate chamber. The Republicans - John W. Warner of Virginia, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina - were making trouble for the Bush administration, and Mr. Cheney let them know it.

The three were pushing for regulations on the treatment of American military prisoners, including a contentious ban on "cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment." The vice president wanted the provision pulled from a huge military spending bill. The senators would not budge.

"We agreed to disagree," Mr. Graham said in an interview last week.

That private session was an early hint of a Republican feud that spilled into the open last week, as Senate Republicans openly challenged President Bush on American military policy in Iraq and the war on terrorism. In the center of the fray, pushing Congress to reassert itself, were those same three Republicans.

The roly-poly guy with the vicious sneer and the talent for altering history while accusing others of doing so apparently didn't like the idea of imposing a standarsd of decency even on miltary operations.

Who ARE these people?


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 21 Nov 05 - 10:36 PM

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Michael Scanlon, a former top aide to Rep. Tom DeLay and a onetime partner of high-powered Washington lobbyist Jack Abramoff, pleaded guilty to a federal conspiracy charge Monday.

As part of the deal with the Justice Department, Scanlon agreed to testify against Abramoff in a probe that also has implicated at least one member of Congress, two government sources have told CNN.

Scanlon was charged Friday with one count of conspiracy as part of an ongoing federal criminal investigation of his and Abramoff's lobbying activities.

Scanlon, a 35-year-old public relations executive, agreed to pay $19.7 million in restitution for kickbacks he admitted receiving as part of the conspiracy to defraud his and Abramoff's clients.

"He's obviously regretful for the circumstances that bring him here, but he's trying to do what he thinks is right," his attorney, Plato Cacheris, told reporters after the hearing in federal district court.

Scanlon was freed on an unsecured $5 million bond pending sentencing. His only comment was: "You guys will be seeing me around."

As part of the plea agreement with federal prosecutors, Scanlon admitted plotting to cheat clients and corruptly influence federal officials.

...from CNN

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 23 Nov 05 - 10:57 PM

The Nation summarizes the anti-war position:

verything that needs to be known is now known: The reasons the Bush Administration gave for the American war in Iraq were all falsehoods or deceptions, and every day the US occupation continues deepens the very problems it was supposed to solve. Therefore there can no longer be any doubt: The war--an unprovoked, unnecessary and unlawful invasion that has turned into a colonial-style occupation--is a moral and political catastrophe. As such it is a growing stain on the honor of every American who acquiesces, actively or passively, in its conduct and continuation.

The war has also become the single greatest threat to our national security. Its human and economic costs are spiraling out of control, with no end in sight. It has driven America's reputation in the world to a historic low point. In the meantime, real threats suffer terrible neglect. These include more terrorist attacks, jeopardized oil supplies, rising tension with China, the spread of nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction and even natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina. All are pushed aside as this Administration pours the country's blood, treasure and political energy into a futile war. In short, ending the Iraq War is the most pressing issue facing America today. Until it is ended, a constructive national security policy cannot be forged.

Americans are well on their way to a full appreciation of the dimensions of this debacle. In an October CBS news poll, 59 percent of citizens surveyed and 73 percent of Democrats now want an end to US military involvement in Iraq. But this growing majority has made its judgment with virtually no help from our nation's leaders. Most shameful has been the Democratic Party's failure to oppose the war. Indeed, support for it has been bipartisan: A Republican President and Congress made the policy, and almost all of the leading Democrats--most of the honorable exceptions are members of the House of Representatives--supported it from the outset and continue to do so. To their credit, would-be presidential candidate Senator Russell Feingold and former Senator Gary Hart have recently made strong antiwar statements. More recently two other presidential contenders, Senator John Kerry and former Senator John Edwards, have begun to call for a shift in policy, though still in vague and reticent terms. More typical, however, are the other presidential hopefuls, Senators Hillary Clinton, Joseph Biden and Evan Bayh, who continue to huddle for cover in "the center." They offer little alternative to Bush's refrain "We must stay the course!" Nor do the party's Congressional leaders and its head, Howard Dean, once a leader of antiwar sentiment. Can such politicians, who cannot even follow a majority--in the Democratic Party, a large majority--really be considered leaders?


The balance of the editorial is here and worth a read.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Bobert
Date: 23 Nov 05 - 11:18 PM

I'm so sick of "agree to disagree" I could puke...

What a stupid thing to say but that is whey our tax dollars are being spent for... Yup, a bunch of PR folks to shove crap down out throats...

Hey, the US is vilolation of the Geneva accords in troturing folks... But Cheney, who loves to see other folks tortutred because his daddy caught him masterbating at an early age and for which he has held 50 years of anger, is taking it out on folks who should, based on internation law, be treated humanly... But no, Chickenhawk Cheney, has to want them tortured?!?!?!?!...

But when it come up that the US is conflict with international law we get this "agree to disagree" from this jerk????

I'm sick of the dodge myself... Either we a country with laws and principles or we ain't... Ain't no agree to disagree about it!!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 24 Nov 05 - 11:39 AM

The Times looks askance at the Administration's actions on the case of Padilla:

"ASHINGTON, Nov. 23 - The Bush administration decided to charge Jose Padilla with less serious crimes because it was unwilling to allow testimony from two senior members of Al Qaeda who had been subjected to harsh questioning, current and former government officials said Wednesday.

Indictment Portrays Padilla as Minor Figure in a Plot
The two senior members were the main sources linking Mr. Padilla to a plot to bomb targets in the United States, the officials said.

The Qaeda members were Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, believed to be the mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, and Abu Zubaydah, a top recruiter, who gave their accounts to American questioners in 2002 and 2003. The two continue to be held in secret prisons by the Central Intelligence Agency, whose internal reviews have raised questions about their treatment and credibility, the officials said.

One review, completed in spring 2004 by the C.I.A. inspector general, found that Mr. Mohammed had been subjected to excessive use of a technique involving near drowning in the first months after his capture, American intelligence officials said.

Another review, completed in April 2003 by American intelligence agencies shortly after Mr. Mohammed's capture, assessed the quality of his information from initial questioning as "Precious Truths, Surrounded by a Bodyguard of Lies."

Accusations about plots to set off a "dirty bomb" and use natural gas lines to bomb American apartment buildings had featured prominently in past administration statements about Mr. Padilla, an American who had been held in military custody for more than three years after his arrest in May 2002.

But they were not mentioned in his criminal indictment on lesser charges of support to terrorism that were made public on Tuesday. The decision not to charge him criminally in connection with the more far-ranging bomb plots was prompted by the conclusion that Mr. Mohammed and Mr. Zubaydah could almost certainly not be used as witnesses, because that could expose classified information and could open up charges from defense lawyers that their earlier statements were a result of torture, officials said.

Without that testimony, officials said, it would be nearly impossible for the United States to prove the charges. Moreover, part of the bombing accusations hinged on incriminating statements that officials say Mr. Padilla made after he was in military custody - and had been denied access to a lawyer."...


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 24 Nov 05 - 01:27 PM

From a dear Irish friend:

"George Bush has started an ill-timed and disastrous war under false pretenses by lying to the American people and to the Congress; he has run a budget surplus into a severe deficit; he has consistently and unconscionably favored the wealthy and corporations over the rights and needs of the population; he has destroyed trust and confidence in, and goodwill toward, the United States around the globe; he has ignored global warming to the world's detriment; he has wantonly broken our treaty obligations; he has attempted to create a theocracy in the United States; he has appointed incompetent cronies to positions of vital national

Now, as the awarded "best sign in the DC peace march" suggested:

"Would someone please give him a blowjob so we can impeach him?"


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: GUEST,Old Guy
Date: 24 Nov 05 - 09:37 PM

Amos, you are now assigned to the position of Presidential Blower.

Now git'er done boy.

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 24 Nov 05 - 10:55 PM

Only if you promise to help impeach the SOB, Old Fart.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Bobert
Date: 25 Nov 05 - 06:26 PM

Heck, If I knew it would get rid of these guys, I'd sho nuff volunteer a couple folks here in Mudville for the honors since they got their head so far up Bush and Cheney's asses it would be a short commute...


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: GUEST,Old Guy
Date: 26 Nov 05 - 02:21 AM


Let's have a list of these "incompetent cronies" and their relationship to Bush. Also ilustrate their incompetence.

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: freda underhill
Date: 26 Nov 05 - 04:41 AM

Published on Friday, November 25, 2005 by the Capital Times, Madison, WI The Cost of Bush Will Be Huge, Lasting
by Dave Zweifel

These haven't been a good couple of months for President Bush.

His approval ratings have plummeted so far that even staunch members of his own party are admitting they disagree with him on several key issues and some are now openly challenging some of his policies. As I predicted after the 2004 elections, we're going to have trouble in a couple of years finding people who will admit to having voted for him, just as nobody would fess up to having voted for "Tricky Dick" Nixon's re-election in 1972.

But Bush's personal political problems are nothing compared to the problems that now face our country, problems brought on by a reckless administration that seems to have little regard for the country's future. In a word, it's scandalous. A front page of USA Today last week showed it all in graphic detail. If we continue on the same track we are today, our annual $319 billion deficit will be more than $4 trillion in 2050, when our grandkids are nearing retirement.

"We face a demographic tsunami," insists David Walker, the U.S. comptroller general. He compares the United States to Rome before the fall of the empire. The country faces deficits in its budget, its balance of payments, its savings and its leadership, he told USA Today. And he's far from alone. Both conservative and liberal economic experts are starting to sound the alarm. We can't keep spending on everything from an incredibly expensive war to a Medicare drug program that mainly benefits insurance companies and cut taxes by hundreds of billions at the same time.

As Sen. Barack Obama, the Illinois Democrat, wrote in the Chicago Tribune last week:

"For too long, the philosophy in Washington has been that you can spend without consequence or sacrifice. That we can fight a war in Iraq and a war on terror, protect our homeland, provide our citizens with Medicare and Social Security and maintain our domestic priorities, all while cutting taxes for the wealthy and funding every local project there is." It's not a sustainable future for America, he added.

Now we have Alan Greenspan lumping the country's record trade deficit on top of all our other problems. There's going to come a time - perhaps earlier than we realize - that foreign lenders are going to stop funding that deficit we keep growing.

As Maya MacGuineas of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget told USA Today, "I want to see a presidential election where the candidates are talking about what taxes they'll raise and what spending they'll cut." What's for sure is that we simply cannot keep on the path we've been following the past five years.

Copyright 2005 The Capital Times

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: freda underhill
Date: 26 Nov 05 - 04:44 AM

Carving up Our Economic Pie by Holly Sklar

Pie season is here. Pumpkin, apple, cherry, whatever you like. We can use edible pie charts -- and some chocolate -- to see how our national economic pie is being carved up more unfairly.

Let's look first at income distribution.

Take two pies -- one for 1979, the other for 2003 (using the latest IRS data).

Divide the 1979 pie into 10 equal slices. If the slices were eaten according to the distribution of income in 1979:

-- The richest 1 percent of taxpayers would get one slice.

-- The rest of the top 20 percent would get four slices.

-- The other 80 percent of taxpayers would split five slices.

Now, divide the 2003 pie into 10 slices.

-- The richest 1 percent would get nearly two slices.

-- The rest of the top 20 percent would get a little over four slices.

-- The other 80 percent would split four slices.

In 1979, the top 20 percent of taxpayers had about as much income as the other 80 percent combined. In 2003, the top 20 percent had 60 percent of the income, leaving just 40 percent for the rest. The richest 1 percent nearly doubled their share.

Let's look more closely at the upward shift in income.

In 1979, the bottom 40 percent of taxpayers had about 15 percent more combined income than the richest 1 percent. In 2003, the richest 1 percent had twice the income share of the bottom 40 percent.

The richest 1 percent share of reported income jumped from 9.6 percent in 1979 to 17.5 percent in 2003. The bottom 40 percent share fell from 11.3 percent to 8.8 percent.

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston puts the growing gap between the very rich and everyone else in stark perspective. He examined the income reported on tax returns of the top 0.01 percent -- about 14,000 households with at least $5.5 million in income.

From 1950 to 1970, for every additional dollar earned by those in the bottom 90 percent, those in the top 0.01 percent earned an additional $162.

From 1990 to 2002, for every additional dollar earned in the bottom 90 percent, those at the top brought in an extra $18,000.

If you are feeling financially down this holiday season, there's a good reason. Average workers have been earning less after inflation, not more. Average hourly earnings dropped 5 percent, adjusting for inflation, between 1979 and 2004 -- while domestic corporate profits rose 63 percent.

The share of national income going to wages and salaries is at the lowest level since 1929 -- the year that kicked off the Great Depression. The share going to after-tax corporate profits, which heavily benefit wealthy Americans through increased dividends and capital gains, is at the highest level since 1929.

Income gaps in the workplace have become increasingly outrageous, as seen in the growing gap between worker pay and CEO pay. We can demonstrate it with a pile of chocolate.

Give 1 piece of chocolate to your worker stand-in and 44 pieces to your CEO stand-in. That was the 1980 ratio of average full-time worker pay to average pay among CEOs in Business Week's survey of major corporations.

For the equivalent 2004 ratio, give 1 piece of chocolate to the worker and 362 to the CEO.

As the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities reports, federal policy is contributing "to a further widening of income disparities between the most affluent households and other Americans." Households with incomes over $1 million will receive an average tax cut of $103,000 this year -- an increase of 5.4 percent in their after-tax income.

The congressional majority is done crying crocodile tears over Katrina and the shameful inequality it exposed.

They're working overtime to stiff the have-nots with more budget cuts so they can keep stuffing the pockets of the haves with more tax cuts. The budget knife is dropping on Medicaid, education, child care, food assistance and more-- even public health, despite loud warnings we are unprepared for bird flu and other threats.

Tell your senators and members of Congress what you think about their priorities, and make your voice count when you vote next November.
Distributed by Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services
Published on Friday, November 25, 2005 by

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Bobert
Date: 26 Nov 05 - 07:54 PM

Yeah, Freda... Make no bones about it, no matter what screwed up policy of Bush's (which means all of them) when you strip them down the rich get richer and the average workin' stiff gets poorer...

Oh, but HARK!!!! The filthy rich are perfectly willing to *lend* thier wealth, at high interets rates, back to the folks they just robbed so that the victims can have a few Christmas presenst under the tree fir their kids, even if it will mean runnin' the plasric up even higher...

You see, that is the crux of the American economy right now... Stealin' and lending back... Stealing and lending back... Problem is that the reality is that the working class stiff will never be able to retire... Remember just a few years ago and folks were so happy that these 401's were going to mean a comfy retirement??? Don't hwear that no more...

Boss Hog don't like retirement 'cept for him and his friends...

This is their way of tryin' to kill off the New Deal...

No one retires!!!!

('Cept us, of course... hehe)


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: GUEST,Old Guy
Date: 26 Nov 05 - 11:13 PM

I don't see any list of the Bush cronies. Bush haters like to hurl accusations but they can't back their accusations up with factual data, just something that someone with a bias against Bush said.

I think that is known as bullshitting.

What was Clinton's approval rating in 1993?

The answer is here:

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Bobert
Date: 26 Nov 05 - 11:34 PM

Like who cares about Clinton's approval ratings from almost a decade and a half ago, Old Guy??? Do you??? And if so, why???

Like what does ancient history have to do with what is going on today???

When are you and yer Bushite buds gonna figgure out that that yer guy has been at the controls long 'nuff now to quit draggin' ancient history into yer arguments...

What, is Bush gonna have to live to be 100 years old before you folks are willin' to say, "Hey, he did this or that"????

I'm serious, Old Guy...

Hey I din't like Clintonm much more thah yer guy but, hey, when you bring Clinton into yer defense of Bush's policies it just makes you sound like real dumb... No offense, mind you...

Why can't you just stand on policy and issues???

Nevermind, I think I know why...


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Leadfingers
Date: 27 Nov 05 - 07:29 PM

Isnt the title of this thread Oxymoronic ?? I cant think of ANYThing popular about the Bush Admin !

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Leadfingers
Date: 27 Nov 05 - 07:35 PM

Anbd 1600 !!!!

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Paco Rabanne
Date: 28 Nov 05 - 03:57 AM

Well held Terence!

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Don Firth
Date: 28 Nov 05 - 07:26 PM

Old Guy asks "Let's have a list of these "incompetent cronies" and their relationship to Bush. Also ilustrate their incompetence."

Okay, Old Guy, since you asked, here's a little material for you to browse. The URLs to the sources are all listed, but there are so many of them that I haven't the time to convert them all to links for your convenience. If you have any doubts about the information, check the source out for yourself. So—pop open a bottle of Geritol, kick back, and have a fun read.

Don Firth

FEMA Cronyism Led to Failure
Michael Brown, who resigned September 12, 2005, as FEMA's director, "has become a symbol of cronyism," Paul Krugman ( in the New York Times.

Brown "didn't know the difference between a tropical depression and an anxiety attack when President Bush charged him with life-and-death decisions," Maureen Dowd wrote ( in the Times. "W. trusted Brownie simply because he was a friend of a friend," Dowd said ( "He was a college buddy of Joe Allbaugh, who worked as W.'s chief of staff when he was Texas governor and as his 2000 presidential campaign manager." When FEMA was "reorganized under Homeland Security, stripping it of authority," Allbaugh left the agency to become a lobbyist for companies like Halliburton, leaving behind "an eviscerated FEMA" with "his friend Brown in charge," Dowd said (

Spencer S. Hsu wrote ( in the September 9, 2005, Washington Post that "Five of eight top Federal Emergency Management Agency officials came to their posts with virtually no experience in handling disasters and now lead an agency whose ranks of seasoned crisis managers have thinned dramatically since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. "FEMA's top three leaders -- Director Michael D. Brown, Chief of Staff Patrick J. Rhode and Deputy Chief of Staff Brooks D. Altshuler -- arrived with ties to President Bush's 2000 campaign or to the White House advance operation, according to the agency. Two other senior operational jobs are filled by a former Republican lieutenant governor of Nebraska and a U.S. Chamber of Commerce official who was once a political operative." "Meanwhile," Hsu reported (, "veterans such as U.S. hurricane specialist Eric Tolbert and World Trade Center disaster managers Laurence W. Zensinger and Bruce P. Baughman -- who led FEMA's offices of response, recovery and preparedness, respectively -- have left since 2003, taking jobs as consultants or state emergency managers, according to current and former officials."
"Patronage appointments to the crisis-response agency are nothing new to Washington administrations. But inexperience in FEMA's top ranks is emerging as a key concern of local, state and federal leaders as investigators begin to sift through what the government has admitted was a bungled response to Hurricane Katrina," Spencer S. Hsu wrote ( September 9, 2005.

FEMA's "Bungled Response" to Hurricane Katrina
FEMA's response to one of the greatest natural disasters in American history was serious hampered by its failure to prepare, in spite of the recent "Hurricane Pam" simulation, and relief spending experience in pre-Election Florida 2004.
"The breakdown in management and communications was so execrable that the president learned about the 25,000 desperate, trapped people at the New Orleans convention center not from [FEMA director Michael Brown] ..., who didn't know himself, but from a wire story carried into the Oval Office by an aide on Thursday, 24 hours after the victims had been pleading and crying for help on every channel," Maureen Dowd wrote ( September 10, 2005.
The "lethally inept response to Hurricane Katrina revealed to everyone that the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which earned universal praise during the Clinton years, is a shell of its former self," Paul Krugman wrote ( September 12, 2005.

FAA incompetence failed to avert the 9/11 event
As the veil of secrecy lifts, as many new questions are revealed as new answers. [1] ( Did the FAA experience the same kind of cronyism incompetence prior September 11, 2001 as did FEMA prior to Hurricane Katrina? Perhaps not; but the process was well underway, as evidenced by the dismissal of the final report of the Hart-Rudman Task Force on Homeland Security, the assignment of Enron to Cheney Energy Task Force, and the appointment of Condoleezza Rice as National Security Advisor.

Nominees to the Department of Justice
"Given this administration's pattern of nominating ideologically extreme candidates for the judiciary and making politically aggressive nominations decisions such as re-nominating candidates previously disapproved," in his May 12, 2005, statement ( before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Vermont Senator Patrick J. Leahy expressed concerns regarding Bush nominees Alice S. Fisher (as Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division), Rachel Brand (as Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Legal Policy), and Regina B. Schofield (as Assistant Attorney General (AAG) for the Office of Justice Programs (OJP)).

Senator Arlen Specter "said in the interview on Friday [August 12, 2005,] that he had concerns about the depth of criminal prosecution experience at the top of the Justice Department after the departure" of Deputy Attorney General James B. Comey, who left in August 2005 to be Lockheed Martin's new general counsel and who had been "a veteran prosecutor in Manhattan," Eric Lichtblau wrote ( in the August 15, 2005, New York Times.

"Judiciary Committee members said that for the first time in memory, none of the most senior officials at the Justice Department" -- Alberto R. Gonzales, Timothy E. Flanigan, Robert D. McCallum, Jr., or Alice S. Fisher -- "would have experience as a criminal prosecutor."

Cronyism and Mass Exodus from Government Departments
Paul Krugman asked ( September 12, 2005, "How many FEMA's are there?"

•        Environmental Protection Agency: "has seen a major exodus of experienced officials over the past few years. In particular, senior officials have left in protest over what they say is the Bush administration's unwillingness to enforce environmental law." According to Hugh Kaufman, "a senior policy analyst in the agency's Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, ... 'The budget has been cut ... and inept political hacks have been put in key positions.'"

•        Food and Drug Administration: "Serious questions have been raised about the agency's coziness with drug companies, and the agency's top official in charge of women's health issues resigned over the delay in approving Plan B, the morning-after pill, accusing the agency's head of overruling the professional staff on political grounds."

•        Corporation for Public Broadcasting: "Republican chairman hired a consultant to identify liberal bias in its programs. The consultant apparently considered any criticism of the administration a sign of liberalism, even if it came from conservatives."

•        Department of the Treasury: "has fallen from grace"; Treasury Secretary John Snow, "was obviously picked for his loyalty rather than his qualifications ... Less obvious to the public is the hollowing out of the department's expertise. Many experienced staff members have left since 2000, and a number of key positions are either empty or filled only on an acting basis."

•        Department of Homeland Security: "FEMA was neglected, some people say, because it was folded into a large agency that was focused on terrorist threats, not natural disasters." and "In 2004 Reuters reported a 'steady exodus' of counterterrorism officials, who believed that the war in Iraq had taken precedence over the real terrorist threat."

"Grand Incompetence Party"
"No one -- no one -- can name a single front on which today's Republicans have shown even the simplest competence. They don't know how to manage an economy. They sure don't know how to balance a budget. They have no idea how to create jobs (though they do have a pretty strong sense of how to make them disappear). Their domestic-security measures have consisted of the usual emphasis on show over substance, first stealing a Democratic idea (the Department of Homeland Security) and then underfunding the result in some crucial respects -- a mistake for which I pray we never pay a price," Michael Tomasky wrote ( in The American Prospect, August 27, 2003.

"They don't understand the Bill of Rights, and their shills in the media obviously don't understand the relationship between the First Amendment and trademark law, as Blah-Blah O'Reilly's laughable lawsuit against the Al Franken shows. They've done nothing to protect the air we breathe and the water we drink, and have, if anything, done damage to those resources. They've done nothing for the minorities Mr. Compassionate Conservative was supposedly courting in 2000, his speeches to the NAACP and the like transcribed by a tremulous media," Tomasky said.

"And now, it turns out, they don't know how to do the one thing they've spent 50 years convincing Americans that they and only they know how to do: fight a war."
"And, of course," Tomasky wrote, "there are wealthy interests who keep the party alive financially and who must be rewarded on all possible fronts. This, actually, is the one service Republicans do perform competently. They make damn sure of that."


•        "The Right-Wing Affiliations of Bush Administration Officials," ( "Right-Wing Watch"/People for the American Way.
•        "The Politicalization of Inspectors General" ( prepared for Representative Henry A. Waxman. United States House of Representatives Committee on Government Reform - Minority Staff, Special Investigations Division, October 21, 2004; revised January 7, 2005.
•        Findings: "Politicization of Inspectors General," ( Committee on Government Reform - Minority Office, October 21, 2004.
•        Statement by Senator Patrick J. Leahy (, U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, May 12, 2005.
•        DOJ Nominees and Appointments as of September 23, 2005 (, including links to official press release announcements, Department of Justice website.

Articles & Commentary

•        Ceci Connolly, "Hill Group Faults HHS for Ideology," (¬Found=true) Washington Post, October 22, 2002.
•        "Some House Democrats Question Department's Recent Decisions Regarding Advisory Panels, Public Health Information," ( Kaiser Network, October 22, 2002.
•        "GAO To Review Operations Under HHS Inspector General in Response to Senators' Request," ( Kaiser Network, October 23, 2002.

•        "Bush's talent for cronyism: foxes guarding the henhouse," ( Project for the Old American Century, undated.
•        "Janet Rehnquist Resigns," ( Associated Press (CBS News), March 4, 2003.
•        "Rehnquist's daughter, under investigation, leaves job," ( Associated Press (Capitol Hill Blue), March 5, 2003.
•        Michael Tomasky, "Ineptitude Redefined. Stereotype holds that the GOP is the party of sober competence. But the opposite is true," ( The American Prospect, August 27, 2003.
•        Linda Berg, "Inside the Bush Administration: Cronyism Despite the Human Cost," (, Winter 2003/2004.

•        Andrew Zajac, "Insiders Shape Postwar Iraq," ( Chicago Tribune (Global Policy), June 20, 2004.
•        David J. Sirota and Judd Legum, "These Dogs Don't Hunt," ( The American Prospect, July 9, 2004: "A Pentagon inspector's defense of Halliburton is a textbook example of the cronyism of Bush's so-called watchdogs."
•        Jon Elliston, "A Disaster Waiting to Happen. As FEMA weathers Bush administration policy changes, some insiders fear that concerns over terrorism are trumping protection from hurricanes and other natural hazards," ( Best of New Orleans, August 28, 2005. Lengthy article includes list of FEMA cuts.
•        "The Final Countdown: Corporate Cronyism," ( 525 Reasons, October 23, 2004.
•        "Big Bush Fundraisers Get Admin Positions," (,2933,139051,00.html) Associated Press (Fox News), November 19, 2004: "One-third of President Bush's top 2000 fund-raisers or their spouses were appointed to positions in his first administration, from ambassadorships in Europe to seats on policy-setting boards." (emphasis added)
•        Brian Ross and Rhonda Schwartz, "Official Who Criticized Homeland Security Is Out of a Job. Inspector General Had Reported Mismanagement, Security Flaws," ( ABC News, December 9, 2004.

•        Megan Scully, "Pentagon IG: Defense official could face criminal charges," ( Congress Daily (, June 7, 2005.
•        "George Bush's Wise Guys: Noe, Abramoff, Reed, and the Wyly Brothers," ( BuzzFlash, June 14, 2005.
•        Eric Holdeman, "Disasters Keep Coming but FEMA Phased Out," ( Washington Post (Truthout), August 31, 2005: "Agency responsible for preparedness absorbed into homeland security."
•        "US: Pentagon's Chief Watchdog Joins Company that Owns Blackwater," ( Reuters (CorpWatch), September 1, 2005: "Joseph Schmitz, the Pentagon's chief internal watchdog since March 2002, has quit to join a defense contractor involved in private security services."
•        "Chertoff Learned of Levee Failure 36 Hours After Mayor Nagin?" ( Think Progress, September 4, 2005.
•        Judd, "Top FEMA Deputies Make Brown Look Qualified," ( Think Progress, September 6, 2005.
•        Kenneth R. Bazinet, "FEMA packed with W's pals. Campaign pros get top jobs," ( New York Daily News, September 7, 2005.
•        "Exposed by Katrina, FEMA's flaws were years in making. Political appointments, loss of focus crippled disaster relief agency," ( USA Today, September 7, 2005.
•        "Two Bush 2000 Florida recount aides were rewarded with top FEMA posts," ( Attytood, September 7, 2005.
•        "Pelosi: Bush: 'Oblivious, in denial, dangerous'," ( Crooks and Liars, September 7, 2005: "At a news conference, Pelosi, D-Calif., said Bush's choice for head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency had 'absolutely no credentials.' ... She related that she had urged Bush at the White House on Tuesday to fire Michael Brown..." WMP and QT links on page.
•        Lara Jakes Jordan, "FEMA chief relieved of Katrina duties," ( Associated Press (Boston Globe), September 9, 2005.
•        Spencer S. Hsu, "Leaders Lacking Disaster Experience. 'Brain Drain' At Agency Cited," ( Washington Post, September 9, 2005.
•        Frank Bass and Dirk Lammers, "Congress to Investigate Sept. 11 Loan Program," ( Associated Press (U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business & Entrepeneurship), September 9, 2005.
•        Maureen Dowd, "Neigh to Cronies," ( New York Times, September 10, 2005.
•        David E. Sanger, "FEMA Chief Was Recalled After High-Level Meeting," ( New York Times, September 11, 2005.
•        Paul Krugman, "All the President's Friends," ( New York Times, September 12, 2005.
•        Roger Simon, "A heck of a job," ( US, September 12, 2005.
•        Frank Bass and Dirk Lammers, "Feds Praise Their Sept. 11 Relief Loan Program but Omit Critical Audit," ( Associated Press (Tampa Bay Online), September 13, 2005.
•        RJ Eskow, "Is the SBA the Next Scandal?" ( Night Light, September 13, 2005.
•        Ellen Goodman, "While we're at it, let's look at FDA incompetence, too," ( Houston Chronicle, September 18, 2005.
•        Marc Kaufman, "FDA Rethinks Women's Chief. Toigo Is Acting Head; Agency Denies Naming Veterinary Official," ( Washington Post, September 20, 2005.
•        Dan Eggan and Spencer S. Hsu, "Immigration Nominee's Credentials Questioned," ( Washington Post, September 20, 2005.
•        "The Soul of Cronyism," ( Petty Larseny Blog, September 20, 2005. re Julie L. Myers
•        Warren P. Strobel and Jonathan S. Landay, "CIA director faces questions from employees," ( Knight Ridder Newspapers, September 22, 2005.
•        Mark Thompson, Karen Tumulty, and Mike Allen, "How Many More Mike Browns Are Out There?" (,9171,1109345,00.html) Time, September 25, 2005: "A TIME inquiry finds that at top positions in some vital government agencies, the Bush Administration is putting connections before experience."
•        Robert Scheer, "Corrupt Connections. Widening Abramoff scandal exposes GOP cronyism," (, September 27, 2005.
•        Christopher Brauchli, "When Cronyism Substitutes for Competence," ( Common Dreams, October 1, 2005.
•        Billmon, "A Crony on the Court," ( Whiskey Bar, October 3, 2005. re Harriet E. Miers
•        Opinion: "Inexpert Selection," ( New York Times, October 11, 2005. re Ellen Sauerbrey
•        Steve Clemons, "Stephen Friedman Named to Chair President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board," ( The Washington Note, October 27, 2005. re Stephen Friedman
•        Richard Wolffe and Holly Bailey, "In the Company of Friends. Bush may be besieged by charges of cronyism, but they don't seem to have affected his picks for a panel assessing intelligence matters," ( Newsweek, November 2, 2005.
•        Steve Soto, "Four Years After 9/11, Bush's Cronyism Extends To National Intelligence As Well," ( The Left Coaster, November 3, 2005.
•        Stewart Simonson and Donald Powell, "Bush cronies continue to hurt country. Will the public's health and pocketbooks be 'Brownied'?" ( Media Transparency, November 10, 2005.
That's it for now, but if you'd like more, I'm sure I can find it.

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: GUEST,Wanderer
Date: 28 Nov 05 - 11:40 PM

The Patriot Act has undermined the civil liberties of ordinary citizens more viciously than any other single act.

Some remarks about it:

"We write to express our deep concern about the draft Patriot Act
reauthorization conference report made available to us early this
afternoon. As you know, the Senate version of the bill, passed by
unanimous consent in July, was itself a compromise that resulted from
intense negotiations by Senators from all sides of the partisan and
ideological divides. Unfortunately, the conference committee draft
retreats significantly from the bipartisan consensus we reached in the
Senate. It does not accomplish what we and many of our colleaguesin the
Senatebelieveis necessary-- a reauthorization bill that continues to
provide law enforcement with the tools to investigate possible terrorist
activity while making reasonable changes to the original law to protect
innocent people from unnecessary and intrusive government surveillance...

For the past several years, our bipartisan coalition has been working
together to highlight and fix the civil liberties problems posed by the Patriot Act. We introduced the SAFE Act to address those problems, while still maintaining important law enforcement powers needed to combat terrorism. We cannot support a conference report that would eliminate the modest protections for civil liberties that were agreed to unanimously in the Senate.

The conference report, in its current form, is unacceptable. We hope
that you, as members of the conference committee, will consider making
the changes set forth above. If further changes are not made, we will
work to stop this bill from becoming law. Thank you for your consideration. "

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Nov 05 - 03:03 PM

Here, just for my good buddy Amos. Enjoy!


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Don Firth
Date: 30 Nov 05 - 12:34 PM

OY! TOO real!

Don Firth

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Donuel
Date: 30 Nov 05 - 02:23 PM

Congressman Weldon may not be long for this world so send a sympathy card to him before he is assasinated by Cheney and his crew.


Good news for Jerry Falwell. A major battle is won on Capitol Hill...

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 02 Dec 05 - 01:19 PM

I have always admired the gritty determination of those who believe that the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were obvious and necessary actions tot hose willing to confront the evil of Al Qeda and Hussein. I appreciate the determination to face things squarely.

But I feel as well that if we are determined to confront evil without flinching, we must include our own harms in the world, and not limit ourselves to those hartms, real or omagined, which have been done to us by others. That way lies insanity, not responsibility.

This site offers some unflinching views of what we are paying for the notional advances in civilization being brought about by the wars initiated by Mister Bush and his administration.

I don't think much else need be said.

There are those who feel Bush should be impeached for crimes committed while in office.

This is a decision each citizen must make in the provacy of his own conscience.


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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 03 Dec 05 - 02:08 PM

From a blog linked in the "Presented by GWB" thread:

ush has lost the battle for the hearts and minds of America.

He is a loser now.
A loser tomorrow.
And even a bigger loser when the historians shred him to bits.

For a majority of Americans he is starting to sound and look and act like a far bigger wimp than his father ever was. He has been dismissed to the back of the class to carve his initials in a desk.

As far as Barbara Bush goes...
I'm sure most Americans feel exactly like I do:

Why did they put that shrew on the cover of our one dollar bills?


I'll take four quarters please...
Oh no...nevermind.
Dimes. Dimes. Dimes.

Posted by: koreyel at December 1, 2005 05:59 PM
"The sources said Mr. Bush has privately blamed Mr. Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld for the U.S.-led war in Iraq. They said the president has told his senior aides that the vice president and defense secretary provided misleading assessments on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, as well as the capabilities of the regime of Saddam Hussein.

As a result, the sources said, Mr. Cheney has been ousted from his role as the administration's point man in the area of national security. They said presidential staffers have kept Mr. Cheney out of the loop on discussions on policy as the White House has struggled with the political and intelligence fallout from the war in Iraq."

More at the link:

They're all running but they've got no where to hide.

It IS Tribunal Time In The United States of America.


Posted by: understandinglife at December 1, 2005 06:10 PM

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 04 Dec 05 - 09:28 AM

Bush administration failed in its most sacred duty

Published: December 4th, 2005 02:30 AM

(News Tribune, WA)

It is truly frustrating for our military to go into a conflict and bravely fight and die when the American people lose their enthusiasm for the war.
When our leaders do not do their homework and commit us to wars using scare tactics based on faulty intelligence, it is not surprising that the American people would lose patience – especially when it becomes apparent that a direct threat to America was never there.

In an authoritarian state, it is much easier for leaders to quell anti-war dissent. In a democracy, the military, dedicated to preserving our freedoms and way of life, must live with the frustration of seeing the people's representatives question a war's cost in lives and resources.

In not adequately weighing the intelligence that ran contrary to their preconceived notions, the Bush administration leaders failed in what is perhaps their most sacred duty – making sure they are sending our citizen soldiers into a just war. They should be held accountable.

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 04 Dec 05 - 10:07 AM

What planet are you on, Mr Bush? (and do you care, Mr Blair?)
Tens of thousands of people marched in 33 countries yesterday to express concern for the environment. But will their leaders respond? Geoffrey Lean and David Randall report

Published: 04 December 2005

More than 100,000 people took to the streets in more than 30 countries yesterday, in the first world-wide demonstration to press for action to combat global warming.

The marches - timed to put pressure on the most important international climate-change negotiations since the agreement of the Kyoto Protocol eight years ago - took place against a background of a blizzard of new research showing that the heating of the planet is seriously affecting the world sooner than the scientists predicted (see panel below).

The protests were directed primarily at President George Bush, who has been assiduously trying to sabotage the protocol and has ruled out even talking about setting targets for reducing the pollution that causes global warming, once the current targets expire.

(Excerpted from the Independent Online, UK)

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 04 Dec 05 - 09:22 PM

Pope fears Bush is antichrist, journalist contends - Church - journalist Wayne Madsden - Brief Article
Catholic New Times, May 18, 2003

Save a personal copy of this article and quickly find it again with It's free! Save it.
WASHINGTON DC -- According to freelance journalist Wayne Madsden, "George W Bush's blood lust, his repeated commitment to Christian beliefs and his constant references to 'evil doers,' in the eyes of many devout Catholic leaders, bear all the hallmarks of the one warned about in the Book of Revelations--the anti-Christ."

Madsen, a Washington-based writer and columnist, who often writes for Counterpunch, says that people close to the pope claim that amid these concerns, the pontiff wishes he was younger and in better health to confront the possibility that Bush may represent the person prophesized in Revelations. John Paul II has always believed the world was on the precipice of the final confrontation between Good and Evil as foretold in the New Testament.

Before he became pope, Karol Cardinal Wojtyla said, "We are now standing in the face of the greatest historical confrontation humanity has gone through. I do not think that wide circles of the American society or wide circles of the Christian community realize this fully. We are now facing the final confrontation between the church and the anti-Church, of the Gospel versus the anti-Gospel."

The pope worked tirelessly to convince leaders of nations on the UN Security Council to oppose Bush's war resolution on Iraq. Vatican sources claim they had not seen the pope more animated and determined since he fell ill to Parkinson's Disease. In the end, the pope did convince the leaders of Mexico, Chile, Cameroon and Guinea to oppose the U.S. resolution.

Hmmmmmmmmmmm..... The Pope, huh? Wow....hmmmmmmm.

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 04 Dec 05 - 10:42 PM

From the Borowitz Report:


Vows to Create Additional Slogans to Defeat Insurgents

One day after making a speech on Iraq at the United States Naval Academy in front of a giant placard reading "Plan For Victory," President George W. Bush pronounced the "Plan For Victory" slogan an unqualified success.

"Much time, thought and effort went into creating the 'Plan For Victory' slogan," Mr. Bush said today at a White House press conference. "I think we can all agree that the hard work that went into that slogan has really paid off."

The president said that not only were the words "Plan For Victory" catchy and memorable, but the choice of yellow letters against a blue background was perfect: "The yellow against the blue really made the letters stand out in a victory-like way."

Mr. Bush told reporters that he believed that "time and patience" were the ultimate keys to success in Iraq, adding, "It took time and patience for us to come up with a really effective slogan like 'Plan For Victory.'"

But even as he praised his administration's latest slogan, Mr. Bush said he would not rest on his laurels, vowing to create additional slogans to defeat the insurgents in Iraq.

"The insurgents may have many weapons at their disposal, but they are not as good as we are at coming up with slogans," Mr. Bush said. "So far the only one they've come up with is 'Jihad' – not catchy at all, if you ask me."

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 05 Dec 05 - 01:09 PM

Below is a running total of the U.S. taxpayer cost of the Iraq War. The number is based on Congressional appropriations.   
The War in Iraq Costs

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 05 Dec 05 - 03:57 PM

From a John Kerry mailer:

"Today, two men and half the Republican Party's troubles are appearing side by side in Texas.

Vice President Dick Cheney is traveling all the way to the Lone Star state to help bail out Tom DeLay by appearing at the embattled Republican leader's fundraiser.

I guess you could say DeLay is Dick Cheney's kind of Republican: abusive, arrogant, and out of control.

It would be almost laughable were it not for the dangerous ideas they believe in, the outrageous conduct they condone, and the power they wield.

2006 is about taking that power out of their hands. So, today, Keeping America's Promise, the political action committee I helped found is asking you to take two critical actions.

As Cheney raises money to help Tom DeLay's campaign, help rush contributions to Nick Lampson, the tough, committed Democrat who is running to unseat DeLay. And consider helping Jill Derby in Nevada and Chris Carney in Pennsylvania - two other candidates in closely fought districts where DeLay money helped Republicans win in 2004."

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Subject: RE: BS: Popular Views of the Bush Administration
From: Amos
Date: 12 Dec 05 - 11:50 PM


ACLU Condemns Hidden Provision that Would Impede Freedom of Speech,
Patriot Act Reauthorization Bill Would Empower Secret Service as Censors

Monday, December 12, 2005

Contact: Shin Inouye
(202) 675-2312        

WASHINGTON - The American Civil Liberties Union today denounced a
provision contained within legislation created to reauthorize the
Patriot Act that would make major changes to the criminal statutes
administered by the Secret Service and could seriously damage the free
speech rights of all Americans. The controversial provision has not had
any Congressional review or hearings.

The following can be attributed to Caroline Fredrickson, Director of the
ACLU Washington Legislative Office:

"If this provision is adopted, our precious First Amendment would be
significantly curtailed. The Secret Service already has broad authority
to stifle dissent at events where high-ranking public officials appear.
This little-noticed provision, contained in legislation meant to
reauthorize the Patriot Act, would give the Secret Service effective
power to enact 'exclusion zones' even without the attendance of the
president or other Secret Service protectee.

"Imagine, in the future, a pro-choice president is set to speak at a
conference, which the Secret Service declares as an 'event of national
significance.' If the bill passes, the Secret Service could shut down
areas throughout the conference and arrest any pro-life protester who
violates the zone for a felony. This could happen even at times when
the president is not speaking.

"Congress has not had ample time to consider this attack on the First
Amendment. While there remains much to do on the Patriot Act powers
themselves, lawmakers must reject this assault on the right to dissent."

To read the ACLU's letter to the Senate on this provision, go to:

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